Cape St Francis is situated in southern part of the Eastern Cape. The pride of joy of this unique village is the Cape St Francis Light House, a National Monument, built in 1878 at Seal Point in Cape St Francis. Still a working lighthouse, the ‘grand old lady’ has the vital task of alerting passing ships to a hostile coastline which over the ages has seen numerous ships reach their end here. Remnants of these shipwrecks can still be seen.
Cape St Francis today is a small coastal hamlet surrounded by nature reserves and a pristine 5km beach encompassed by 2 points, Shark Point and Seal Point, Seal Point being the third most southerly point in South Africa. The town was only proclaimed in 1965 and it remains mainly a holiday town with less than 700 permanent residents. Due to the fact that the small town is surrounded by nature reserve, it is unlikely that any more land will become available for development.
With very limited commercially zoned property, Cape St Francis is notable for the lack of commercial development, a factor which rates very highly with people who live and have invested here. It can best be described as a ‘sleepy fisherman-type village.’
The climate is temperate and the prevailing wind ensures good surf conditions, giving rise to the legendry status of the surfing spot, “Seal Point” . The wild side is a magnificent rocky coastline where excellent fishing, rock pools and rock formations are to be found. Stretching inland are vast expanses of protected reserve through which many nature trails have been cut and offer delightful, non-strenuous walks with frequent viewings of the wild life still living in these reserves. The area falls within the Cape Floral Kingdom and it provides excellent bird watching and viewing of the multiple specimens of fynbos endemic to this area..
The area is rich in terms of archeological history and there are a number of areas stone-age middens have been found along with shells and remains of primitive implements..
Fishing for chokka is a major industry here which employs local people. The fishing takes place during proclaimed periods during the year, a system introduced to protect the valuable natural resource from being over-fished. Local here-say has it that during a calamari/chokka season one can read one’s newspaper at night by the light generated by the chokka boats which use high voltage lamps to attract the chokka to the surface where they are caught by hand-lines.
The endangered Oyster Catchers can frequently be seen on the rocks and beach as can the Cape Clawless Otter. Whales frequent our bay as do dolphin